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Zampa and Head star as Australia crush Pakistan in ODI




Travis Head scored a sparkling century as spinner Adam Zampa wreaked havoc with the ball to lead under-equipped Australia to an 88-point ODI win over Pakistan in Lahore.

Head, playing his first ODI since 2018, hit 101 from 72 alongside Aaron Finch to take Australia to 7-313 in Tuesday’s series opener.

In response, Pakistan were knocked out for 225 from 45.2 overs despite the best efforts of flyhalf Imam Ul Haq (103 from 96 balls) and captain Babar Azam (57 from 72 balls).

Zampa finished 4-38 from 10 overs in a stellar display as Australia took a 1-0 lead in the three-game series.

Head also took 2-35 from six overs in a surprise cameo with the ball, but it was with the bat that he inflicted the most damage.

The 28-year-old was only one down when he received an lbw at second.

Head immediately reviewed the decision, with replays showing Mohammad Wasim’s delivery kicking the outside leg stump.

The southpaw made the most of the reprieve, punishing anything wide to bump his half-century up on 32 balls.
By the time Head lifted his ton of 70 balls, he had hit three sixes and 12 fours.

It was the fastest ODI century by an Australian against Pakistan.

Ben McDermott added 55 from 70 as Australia ran 1-171 in the 25th but the pace then slowed as wickets steadily fell.

Only a few vigorous late shots from Cameron Green (40 points on 30 balls) allowed Australia to regain the rhythm.

“I’m happy for Travis. He’s been out of the team for a while, and to come back and get 100 out of 70 balls – that’s a winner,” Zampa told the host broadcaster after the game.

“The boys played very well. The opening batsmen set the tone early for us, it was a really competitive total.

“Our fast bowlers put on good pressure at the start and we got the results at the end.”

Pakistan got off to a good start in their hunt by moving to 1-120 after 24 overs.

Babar became the second fastest player to reach 4,000 ODI runs when he hit Mitchell Swepson for four early in his innings.

The star batsman took 82 innings to reach the mark, just one shy of the record held by Hashim Amla.

But it felt like the game was over when the two Australian debutants cleared Pakistan’s biggest dangers.

Swepson (2-53) trapped Azam plumb lbw, with the Pakistani skipper blowing a criticism in the process.

And Nathan Ellis (1-36) put an end to Pakistani resistance by defeating Ul Haq.

It was an impressive win for Australia given the visitors entered the game with just 13 fit players to choose from after being ravaged by injuries and COVID-19.

Less than 24 hours after Josh Inglis went into self-isolation after contracting COVID-19, spinner Ashton Agar has also been stricken with the virus.

All-rounder Mitch Marsh (hip) and Steve Smith (elbow) were injured, while Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood, Pat Cummins and David Warner were all rested from the white ball component of the tour.

© AAP




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